(Bloomberg) -- Swedbank AB says its Estonian unit has been named a suspect in a money laundering investigation by authorities in the Baltic country.
As part of the probe started in 2019, Estonia’s special investigator for white-collar crime is investigating whether money laundering or “other criminal activities” have taken place at the bank, and summoned it for an interrogation, the Stockholm-based lender said in a statement.
Swedbank said it’s cooperating with authorities and doesn’t have more information on “how this investigation will proceed or what the implications of it may be.”
Swedbank faces large U.S. fines after failing to thwart criminals from using its operations to launder money. The scandal led to a swath of forced departures from the bank and a $386 million fine imposed by Swedish authorities in 2020.
What Bloomberg Intelligence Says...
Swedbank’s potential money-laundering and sanctions penalties in the U.S. are unlikely to exceed the $386 million imposed by Swedish authorities in 2020. That amount would represent about 20% of the bank’s $2 billion in consensus net income for 2022. We think Swedbank’s relevant profits point to fines by U.S. enforcers in that range or lower.
Estonia is among Swedbank’s four home markets. The others are Sweden, Latvia and Lithuania.
The bank’s law firm found about $40 billion in potentially suspicious transactions. Chief Executive Officer Jens Henriksson said last month that the U.S. probe could take another two years to reach a conclusion.
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